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Conscious Consumer

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world.”
Margaret Mead, Cultural Anthropologist, 1901-1978


Conscious consumerism is about shifting our spending habits to effect change in the marketplace. If we care about our health, our family's wellbeing and the environment, we need to change our patterns of consumption. Making conscious choices means buying wisely, consuming and wasting less, as well as thinking through the consequences of our purchases.

GMO Foods Not Welcome

Countries in Europe and North America are taking a stand against the cultivation of transgenic (GMO) crops. France will reinstate a ban on the cultivation of Monsanto’s MON810 maize (corn) just in time to prevent the genetically modified grain being sown this year.

The French public is fiercely opposed to genetically modified organisms (GMO). The French government's request to the EU Commission was based on "significant risks for the environment" shown in recent scientific studies, mainly one by the European Food Safety Agency (EFSA) in December on "bt11" GMO maize which said its conclusions also apply in some respects to the MON810.

Just Say No

It looks like there is finally some real opposition against genetically engineered foods.

Vermont, California, Michigan and Washington are all working on ballot initiatives to get mandatory labelling of genetically modified (GM) foods in their states. Vermont takes it a step further though, as the legislation would effectively also end phoney "all natural" claims for products that contain wholly unnatural, GMOs.

Unknowingly consumers have allowed Monsanto and other biotech companies to saturate the market with their genetically altered food additives. The misuse of the "all natural" label has only made matters worse.

Antibiotics in Your Food

There is little doubt that antibiotics revolutionised modern medicine and saved millions of lives. But most antibiotics are not used to save life. Humans take them too often for minor ailments. And nearly 50% of all antibiotics are used in farming, primarily in intensive livestock production to compensate for crowded and unnatural conditions on factory farms.

Immune Boosters

This time of year, germs, environmental toxins and allergens are placing tremendous stress on our immune systems. Certain herbs and plants give our immune systems a boost by creating signals that mount a response to an invading pathogen. Astragalus, olive leaf and shiitake mushroom help white blood cells function properly and protect the body from infection.

Astragalus

Best Time For Coffee?

A free Caffeine Zone iOS app, developed at Penn State University, tells you the ideal time to take a coffee break to keep you in the "optimal mental alertness zone". It’s designed to help people determine when an extra jolt of caffeine may give them a mental boost and when it could harm sleeping patterns.

Are All Fats Created Equal?

The terms fatty acids and fats are often used interchangeably, but a fatty acid is the basic unit/building block of a fat molecule. There are three main types of fatty acids/fats found in foods: saturated, monounsaturated and polyunsaturated and they function differently in the body.

Foods of animal origin are typically highest in saturated fatty acids. In contrast, foods from plant origin are usually higher in monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids. All fats contain 9 calories per gram and approximately 115-120 calories per tablespoon.

Fungicide Detected in Orange Juice


On January 9, 2012, the U.S Food and Drug Administration announced it will step up testing for a fungicide that has been found in low levels in orange juice. They say they are not concerned about the safety of the juice but will increase testing to make sure the contamination is not a problem. Not a problem? The fungicide they are referencing is carbendazim, classified by Friends of the Earth as one of their ‘filthy four’ pesticides.

Sugar Bombs

“Most parents would never serve dessert for breakfast, but many children’s cereals have just as much sugar or more”.
Jane Houlihan, Senior Vice President,Environmental Working Group

Cereal is often considered a quick, easy and inexpensive breakfast for kids and adults. But a new study from the good folks at the Environmental Working Group, a U.S. based non-profit research and public health advocacy group, reveals that there is enough sugar in the popular brands of breakfast cereal to fuel more than a morning’s worth of tantrums and meltdowns.

Navigating the Yogurt Aisle

Yogurt has long been considered a ‘health-food’. It can make a great dessert or mid-morning snack. It’s also easy to throw in your child’s lunch box. So it’s important to pick a yogurt that actually delivers on its promise. That can be challenging particularly when advertising claims don’t necessarily correspond with nutritional facts. The choices can be overwhelming but after a little investigation, you’ll quickly discover that not all brands are what they seem.